Jeff Myers
Rachel Calloway
JACK Quartet
Catalog Number: 
#1 035
new classical
new music
Release Date: 
May 31, 2024
1 CD
One Sheet: 

Requiem, the debut album from composer Jeff Myers, explores death through the secular lens of diverse poets such as Rumi, Petrarch, Frida Schanz, and Oscar Wilde. Myers’ longtime collaborators, JACK Quartet and Rachel Calloway, lead listeners  through a series of tableaux that portray the creeping dread of death, the poignant loss of a loved one, and the ecstasy of transcendence. The second work on the album, dopamine, retunes the string quartet, turning it into a virtual microtonal synthesizer.

Written as a response to the sudden death of Myers’ sister- in-law in 2010, Requiem Aeternam, unfurls in two parts, I. Grieving and II. Dying.  Writing this music served as a way to express confusion as an atheist responding to death and grief.  Drawing on diverse poetry from different eras, languages, and perspectives, Myers weaves together a personal memorial and a space of solace for those in similar need. For the fourth text, Myers  uses the text of a traditional Filipino lullaby to honor his spouse’s sister and her family. 

The musical language of the Requiem. is eclectic and combines lyricism, Myers’ own brand of tonality, microtonality and just intonation. dopamine, an early collaboration for JACK in 2009, has the quartet retuned completely and playing almost all in harmonics to create a kind of meta-instrument which only plays a set of microtonal and just intonation pitches.

The music of Jeff Myers (b.1977) has been called “Striking…and harmonically rich” by the New York Times and “…brilliant and powerful…” by The Classical Voice of New England. He was recently hailed as a "gifted young composer" by New York Times critic Anthony Tommasini for the Fort Worth Opera staging of his opera Buried Alive. Myers' music has been played by many well known luminaries of the classical music world. His The Angry Birds of Kauai was commissioned, premiered and recorded by Grammy award winning violinist Hilary Hahn and pianist Cory Smythe (see ‘In 27 Pieces: the Hilary Hahn Encores’ album).


Rachel Calloway brings versatility and compelling insight to stages worldwide. Her work has been praised by the New York Times for “penetrating clarity” and “considerable depth of expression” and by Opera News for her “adept musicianship and dramatic flair.” A dedicated interpreter of new music, Ms. Calloway has premiered hundreds of solo and chamber music works. Recent and upcoming premieres include music by Augusta Read Thomas, John Zorn, Robert Xavier Rodriguez, David Garner, Gabriela Lena Frank, Christopher Cerrone, and Annika Socolofsky. She collaborates with premiere ensembles including Third Coast Percussion, JACK Quartet, the Amernet Quartet, and Ensemble Signal. Ms. Calloway and her husband, violinist Ari Streisfeld, founded Duo Cortona, an ensemble dedicated to the creation and performance of new works for violin and voice.


Undeniably our generation’s “leading new-music foursome,”the GRAMMY-nominated JACK Quartet’s “stylistic range, precision and passion have made the group one of contemporary music’s indispensable ensembles”(The New York Times). Comprising violinists Christopher Otto and Austin Wulliman, violist John Pickford Richards, and cellist Jay Campbell, JACK was founded in 2005 and operates as a nonprofit organization dedicated to the performance, commissioning, and appreciation of 20th and 21st century string quartet music, synchronized in its mission to create an international community through transformative, mind-broadening experiences and close listening. Through intimate, longstanding relationships with many of today’s most creative voices, the quartet has a prolific commissioning and recording catalog, has been nominated for three GRAMMY Awards, and is the 2024 recipient of Chamber Music America’s Michael Jaffee Visionary Award.